Tags Posts tagged with "ratatouille"



This week’s featured shelter pet is Ratatouille, a five year-old female domestic shorthair mix up for adoption at the Smithtown Animal Shelter. 

A total cuddle bug, Ratatouille loves people, and is a big fan of getting her head scratched. She is super sweet, affectionate, and friendly. She has a reactive skin condition called Eosinophilic Granuloma that causes her to have some itchy and discomforting lesions on her lip and her side. Fortunately, these lesions are not contagious to other animals, but they do require steroid treatment from time to time. 

Ratatouille is ready for her new home, and we know that perfect home is out there somewhere for her.

If you would like to meet Ratatouille, please call ahead to schedule an hour to properly interact with her in a domestic setting.

The Smithtown Animal & Adoption Shelter is located at 410 Middle Country Road, Smithtown. Visitor hours are currently Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Sundays and Wednesday evenings by appointment only). For  more information, call 631-360-7575 or visit www.townofsmithtownanimalshelter.com.

Photo courtesy of Disney Enterprises/Pixar Animation Studios

By Barbara Beltrami

Although many of us fondly think of Ratatouille as the Disney movie with the eponymous cute little rat, it is actually a French vegetable stew of eggplant, zucchini, tomatoes, onions, peppers and fresh herbs that originated in Provence. It’s the best way I know of to enjoy late summer’s bounty all together in delicious mouthfuls of garden goodness. As with most regional dishes, each cook has her own adamant way of preparing her ratatouille.

Because it’s one of my favorite veggie dishes,  whenever I’ve visited France, I’ve managed  to come home with another recipe for ratatouille. Please note that these first two very traditional recipes call for cooking each veggie separately; that’s what makes them so colorful and preserves their distinct flavor and texture. The third recipe is a spin off of ratatouille, but equally savory. All recipes can be served hot, warm, at room temperature or cold. I think ratatouille goes well with almost anything!

Giselle Renouard’s Ratatouille

YIELD: Makes 4 servings


1 pound eggplant, sliced into 1/2” rounds

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Olive oil

1 pound zucchini, diced

1 pound mixed red and green bell peppers, cored, seeded and thinly sliced

1/2 pound onions,  finely chopped

1 1/2 pounds fresh tomatoes, chopped

3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced

1/2 teaspoon sugar

Handful flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

Leaves from several sprigs thyme

Leaves from one large sprig basil, julienned


Place eggplant in a colander, sprinkle with salt and let drain 30 minutes. Pat dry and cut again into small chunks. In large skillet over medium heat, warm olive oil; add eggplant, stir occasionally and when brown on all sides remove and drain on paper towels. Add a little more oil and cook the zucchini just until soft; remove and drain. Next, add a little more oil, if needed, and cook peppers; remove them when tender; add onions, cook until soft but not brown, then add tomatoes, garlic, sugar, parsley and thyme and simmer for about 30 minutes. Return the rest of the vegetables to the pan and, stirring frequently but gently, simmer until heated through, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat, add basil, salt and pepper.

Mme. Marie Ouvrard’s Ratatouille

YIELD: Makes 6 servings


3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 medium onions, thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 red bell pepper, seeded, cored and diced

1 1/2 pounds small zucchini, cut into 1/2” cubes

3/4 pound eggplant, cut into 1/2” cubes

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

5 medium tomatoes, diced

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil


In large skillet heat olive oil over medium heat; add onions and garlic and, stirring often, sauté, for a minute or two until onion softens and garlic releases its aroma. Stir in red pepper and cook over medium heat, 4 to 5 minutes, until soft. Add zucchini and eggplant and simmer briefly. If mixture starts to stick to pan, add a little more oil or hot water. Stir in thyme and tomatoes; season with salt and pepper; simmer until all vegetables are soft but not mushy, about 5 minutes. Just before serving, add basil.

Lucie Durand’s Ratatouille

YIELD: Makes 4 servings


Nonstick cooking spray

2 large onions, sliced thin

2 pounds eggplant sliced 1/2” thick

2 orange or yellow bell peppers

2 red bell peppers

4 large tomatoes, cut into 1/2 slices

1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

8 garlic cloves, halved

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoons minced flat leaf parsley

1 tablespoon minced fresh basil leaves


Preheat oven to 350 F. Spray bottom and sides of a casserole with nonstick cooking spray. Make a layer using  half each of the onion rings, eggplant, peppers, tomatoes, thyme, salt and pepper and garlic in that order. Repeat and drizzle with olive oil. Place in oven and bake about 50 to 60 minutes, until bubbling and tender. Occasionally, using the back of a wooden spoon, press down on the vegetables to make sure they are cooking evenly. Remove from oven, garnish with parsley and basil before serving.